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Fat Joe On Changing Black & Brown Lives Through Market America: "It’s Far From A Pyramid"

Plus, what he has in store, musically. 

Fat Joe plans to change lives. How? With his marketing company, of course. Since being named president of Urban & Latino Development of Market America in 2014, the Terror Squad rapper has received backlash for pushing the agenda of a "pyramid scheme." But, Joey cleared up the misconceptions about his business.

READ: La La Anthony Reveals The Real “Motives” Behind Her Latest Business Endeavor

“I know you may hear the word ‘pyramid,’" Joe said to us. "There are two lines of distribution and the truth is, I have people on my team working under me who make more money than me. So the stories you hear are untrue. People are like ‘why is this guy getting involved with this?’ I see through all the rhetoric and propaganda. I see how many people are helped and see how many people’s lives are changed. This isn’t made for a rapper [though]. This is made for a normal person.”

Fat Joe, né Joseph Cartagena, has been a friend of Market America founders JR & Loren Ridinger for over 15 years. After becoming their “celebrity friend” at conferences, Joe found out more about the business and realized there wasn’t enough Latino/African American representation in the company. Once he saw the overall plan – the bigger picture – he knew he had to get involved.

"One day I asked JR how many people he had in the company," he began to explain. "He said 180,000. I said 'How many Latino?' He said two. 'How many are Black?' He said two. I asked how many white people were in it. He said 100,000 white people, 80,000 Asians, and over 400 people have become millionaires.

Then I asked why are there only two Latinos and two blacks. He said 'Everytime I go to the hood and try to tell the Latinos and blacks, they think I'm the white guy trying to take advantage of them.' He said he doesn't know anybody in the business as passionate as me that can go talk to Latinos and blacks. Then I said 'Maybe I'm interested in this business. Show me the plan.' I saw the plan and how karma-based it was and how much we can help people succeed but at the same time you succeed as well."

Aside from cultivating his business with Market America's SHOP.com, Cartagena is also working on releasing two albums this year. And get this, he's also penning an upcoming telenovela.

“I’m not just working with SHOP.com," said Cartagena. "I’m an executive in my music, I’m writing movies, and I don’t even want to tell you this, but I’m actually writing a telenovela right now. So you can know that one.” Say word?

The "Lean Back" MC touched on his forthcoming album, Diggin Through The Crates, with A.G. of Show & A.G. and Diamond D, plus his collaborative album with Remy Ma. Joe and the #LHHNY star recently shot the video for "All The Way Up" with Fred the Godson, which will serve as the first offering off their joint album.

"I'm excited because my biggest success was with her. "Lean Back" went 47 weeks at No. 1 and we just completed a whole album that's phenomenal. For the underground heads, I'm almost completed with this Diggin' Through The Crates album." – Tony Centeno

READ: N.O.R.E. & Fat Joe Bring Down The House At J Dilla Weekend In Miami

All The Way Up @therealremyma @fredthegodsonmusic #BX

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Cardi B's Fans Are Creeping Her Out With Comments About Her Family

Cardi B loves her fans, but she's making one thing clear to them: her family is off limits. During one of her popular Instagram live sessions, Cardi revealed that she frequently talks to her fan pages but that recently they've been crossing a few lines and talking "hella crazy" about her family, especially her sister Hennessy Carolina.

Before getting into it, the "Please Me" artist made it clear that she's incredibly thankful for her fans and that she goes out of her way to respond to their comments and like their pictures, they just have to leave her family alone.

"I am so thankful that I have people who love me, that follow up with my life, always supporting me, always supporting my music, my looks and everything," she said during the live.

"But it's like bro, no, you cannot talk about my sister. I would go to jail for my sister, I would die for my sister, I would take a bullet for my sister. So nobody could talk about my sister. I could be best friends with somebody for 100 years. Once they say something slick about my sister, you’re getting cut the f*** off, period.”

Cardi warned the Bardi Gang that hands would be thrown, regardless of whether they're a fan of hers or not, over her sister.

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Cardi B Awarded Crossover Artist Of The Year At 2019 Billboard Latin Music Awards

2019 has been a pretty successful year for Cardi B. In February, Cardi won a Grammy Award for "Best Rap Album," and as of Thursday (April 26), the Bronx native was awarded Crossover Artist of the year at the Billboard Latin Music Awards.

The 26-year-old won over  Demi Lovato, DJ Snake and Drake in the category. Cardi's been featured on some of the hottest Latin records that have ruled both 2018 and 2019. She has her hit song "I Like It" with Bad Bunny and J. Balvin, and she's featured in the tracks "Taki Taki" and "La Modelo" as well.

Cardi's win makes her the first female rapper to ever win a Billboard Latin Music Award. The MC took to her Instagram stories to thank the publication for the award, a move that comes after a recent squabble she had with gossip page "The Shade Room."

On Wednesday, in a series of now-deleted Instagram videos, Cardi slammed the gossip page for posts she felt harmed her husband Offset's image. In the video, Cardi called out TSR for allegedly only sharing negative news about her label mates at Quality Management, rather than uplifting them and the rest of the black community.

“Everybody that they know that I’m cool with, they always try to get them set up for people to talk sh*t,” she said. "Offset donated 25K to the Ellen foundation for the kids in Africa. Did The Shade Room post it? No… are they posting any positive sh*t and investment talk that he’s been talking about in his interviews? No. But they sure post the way he had drama with his baby mom. They sure posting about his court cases, right?"

Congrats to Cardi on her win. See the complete winners list over on Billboard.com.

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B-Real, DJ Muggs, Sen Dog, Eric Bobo of Cypress Hill attend a ceremony honoring Cypress Hill With Star On The Hollywood Walk Of Fame on April 18, 2019 in Hollywood, California.
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It's About Time: Cypress Hill Receives Star On Hollywood Walk Of Fame

Cypress Hill doesn't always get the credit they deserve for their impact on hip-hop history, but they've been honored forever with a revered star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

With a career of 30 years, the legacy of the four-man group of B-Real, DJ Muggs, Sen Dog, and Eric Bobo (along with former member Mellow Man Ace) includes six platinum albums and 90s zeitgeist songs like "How I Could Just Kill A Man," "Insane In The Brain," and "Hand On The Pump." They released their self-titled debut in 1991 and the chart-topping follow-up Black Sunday two years later,  and have continued creating ever since, releasing their ninth and latest album Elephants On Acid in September 2018. Cypress Hill are considered West Coast rap legends, and the first Latino rap group to have multiple gold and platinum records. Anchored by Muggs' gloomy, gritty production and B-Real's nasal, charismatic rhymes, Cypress Hill is as much a part of rap history as anyone.

The group's ceremony included speeches from Latino comedian George Lopez and fellow West Coast rap legend Xzibit, who said 'it's about time' before detailing the group's illustrious career.

Xzibit pointed out Cypress Hill not only brought Latino representation in an industry that largely lacked it, but that they were staunch marijuana advocates way before today's growing legalization.

"The Grammy-nominated group showed us stoned is indeed the way of the walk. Long before the days of legal dispensaries and medical marijuana, Cypress Hill were advocates of that sticky icky icky oooh wee!" Xzibit shared. "...Cypress Hill are pioneers in their own right. Their accomplishments and accolades reach deep in the roots and history books of hip-hop, and today is another chapter in that saga. Yo B-Real, Sen Dog, Muggs, Bobo: you are our Rolling Stones, Ungrateful Dead, you are the West Coast Public Enemy."

Lopez insisted that out of all the 2,600 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, "there are none more important than the one we're about to unveil for Cypress Hill. There's a lot of actors, there's a lot of comedians, there's a lot of entertainers who are on this (Walk of Fame). But there's only one cypress hill, the first Latino hip-hop group. But to everyone who lives the American dream, not the last Latino hip-hop group to ever be on the Hollywood Walk of Fame."

Cypress Hill's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is unveiled pic.twitter.com/cNtpIUd8Xg

— Variety (@Variety) April 18, 2019

Xzibit says "it's about time" that Cypress Hill gets their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame pic.twitter.com/DHap9UkzXq

— Variety (@Variety) April 18, 2019

George Lopez says there are 2,600 stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, but "none more important than the star we are about to unveil for Cypress Hill" pic.twitter.com/wuaakjKp6u

— Variety (@Variety) April 18, 2019

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